Service Is Humanity™ Awards: 3 Service Organizations Bringing Humanity Back into their Service Business

AAA accepts Service is Humanity Award

Each year at the Smarter Services Executive Symposium, the Service Council recognizes three service organizations—and their service leaders—that are setting the bar for service. These organizations have implemented programs or incorporated strategies into their service organization that go far beyond operational metrics and recognize the important role service plays in creating a more diverse, equitable, compassionate, and sustainable world. Importantly, the leaders at these organizations exemplify what it means to empower employees and frontline technicians to create exceptional customer experiences that improve their community at large.  

This year’s award recipients—AAA, Trane and Dell Technologies—are prime examples of what it means to create an environment that offers a best-in-class employee and customer experience. 

Slow Down, Move Over: AAA’s Mission to Protect Their Roadside Workers 

AAA accepts Service is Humanity Award

AAA embodies the spirit of helping people in their time of need. Service technicians and tow truck operators are at the heart of AAA’s service operation, and these frontline workers put their lives at risk every time they come to the rescue—especially for customers who are stranded on busy roads and highways. Sadly, 23 roadside workers are killed every year while servicing a disabled vehicle, while many more are injured.  

To combat roadside inuries and fatalities, AAA launched its Slow Down, Move Over initiative. AAA has played an important role in passing Move Over Laws in all 50 states, and ensuring those laws are also applicable to tow truck drivers and first responders. These laws require drivers to slow down and move over one lane to protect those who are stranded or servicing the vehicle.  AAA further supports the public awareness of these laws through broader educational initiatives and public service announcements.  

On Day 2 of the Smarter Services Executive Symposium, CEO John Carroll  and CRO Greg D’Andrea recognized Scott VerBracken, Vice President of Automotive Services at AAA, for his dedication to the Slow Down, Move Over initiative. VerBracken was joined by service vehicle operator, Juan Valle, on stage. AAA continues to be an advocate for strengthening the Move Over Laws across the U.S.—ensuring that all roadside workers are protected under this law.  

Preparing the Next Generation of Service Technicians: Trane’s Nationally Accredited Training Program 

Rod Cook accepts Service is Humanity Aware

It’s no secret that service engineer recruitment, retention, and engagement has been an ongoing struggle for service leaders. In fact, recent Service Council research culminating in the Voice of the Field Service Engineer Report found an alarming 80% of Millennial and Gen Y field service engineers noted they either don’t intend to, or don’t know if they will stay in field service. To deepen frontline engagement, Service Council offers a number of recommendations in its latest Research Insight, focused on career pathing for field service engineers. One of those recommendations includes an investment in learning, development and apprenticeship.  

Trane Technologies’ HVAC Technician Apprenticeship Program sets an esteemed example for apprenticeship training. Launched in early 2022, this training program allows participants to earn a full-time wage while they’re enrolled—with no prior experience required—and an opportunity for raises once certain skills are attained. In addition to on-the-job training by senior technicians, Trane offers online courses to provide flexibility and reduce transportation costs.  

In August of 2023, Trane’s apprenticeship program received national registration from the U.S. Department of Labor, accrediting the program.  

Trane remains committed to helping employees gain better economic opportunities. Alongside their nationally accredited program, they recently transitioned their tuition support model from reimbursement to advancement and included trade certifications in that model.  

John Carroll and Greg D’Andrea recognized Rod Cook, Director of North American Service Operations, for his commitment to frontline development. Cook was joined on stage by a recent graduate of the Apprenticeship Program and current HVAC technician, Benjamin Jee.   

Creating a More Inclusive Place to Work and Thrive: Dell’s Neurodivergent Hiring Program 

Bob Feiner and Jason MacIver receiving Service is Humanity Award

According to the Alliance for Global Inclusion, studies have shown that many neurodiverse individuals—particularly those on the autism spectrum—remain dramatically unemployed. These individuals may require accommodations to help them unlock their true potential, ranging from a nontraditional interview process or modified work environments to focused support, to help them succeed.  

What’s clear is that neurodiverse individuals often bring a wealth of skills and talent to the market, and companies are starting to take notice. Dell Technologies has created a program to help them thrive.  

Dell’s Neurodiversity Hiring Program offers 10-12 week internships and career opportunities for neurodivergent job seekers. To start, Dell offers a skill-based interview process, often seen as less stressful than the question-and-answer style interview format that most are accustomed to. This allows candidates to show what they’re really good at in a way that’s predictable. According to an interview with Danielle B., the Neurodiversity Hiring Program Lead, the program also creates an ecosystem of support for both team members and managers. Employees receive career coaching, while managers are trained on how to best support individuals with challenges related to neurodiversity. This initiative is also supported and influenced by a council of neurodiverse individuals, who discuss how to enhance and make ongoing improvements to the program. 

Bob Feiner, Senior Vice President of Dell Technologies Services, has long been an advocate and champion for Dell’s Neurodiversity Hiring Program. John Carroll recognized Feiner and his colleague, Jason MacIver, VP of Services Procurement on Day 2 of the Symposium for Dell’s work in helping neurodiverse individuals secure roles in data analytics, cybersecurity, software engineering, and AI.  

Do you know a service leader or organization that is going above and beyond to create a more diverse, inclusive and/or sustainable world? Nominate them for 2024’s Service Is Humanity awards at 

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